Wild Rice & Apple Grain Bowl
This hearty, healthy dish has a lot going for it, not least of which is its heartiness and healthiness. It’s a stick-to-your-bones and make-you-feel-nourished kinda meal, plus it’s full of delicious fall flavors. Which fall flavors, you ask? There’s chewy wild rice, tender veggies, crispy kale, crunchy apples and pepitas, and creamy feta. The little bursts of salt from the feta and the sweet-tart flavor of the apples makes each bite fun to eat.
There’s a great balance of bitter and sweet veggies here, and it’s all tied together with a mildly sweet, slightly tart (and oh-so-cute) pink vinaigrette. This bowl makes a great dinner or make-ahead meal when life gets busy. Pair it with a tart cider for optimal enjoyment.
Preparation time: 50 minutes
Cook time: 60 to 75 minutes
For the grain bowl and roasted vegetables:
3 medium golden beets, washed and trimmed
1 small butternut squash, peeled, cored and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 tablespoons plus ½ teaspoon L&B Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 small head cauliflower, cut into small florets
12 ounces Brussels sprouts, rinsed, trimmed and halved
1 bunch kale, rinsed, stems removed and cut into 3-inch pieces
¾ cup raw pepitas
4 ½ cups cooked wild rice
2 medium Honeycrisp apples, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
3 ounces feta
For the vinaigrette:
1 large shallot, trimmed and rough chopped
⅓ cup L&B Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon honey
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Heat oven to 450 F.
- To make the roasted vegetables: Place golden beets on a sheet of aluminum foil and wrap them tightly.
- Roast the beets in the oven for 40 to 50 minutes, until fork-tender. Open the foil packets and let cool for 5 minutes. Rub a towel against the skin of the still-warm beets to peel it off. Slice into wedges. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the squash, 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Toss until completely coated and transfer squash to one side of a rimmed baking sheet.
- In the same bowl, toss together the cauliflower, 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Transfer cauliflower to the other side of the baking sheet with the squash. Bake, flipping the vegetables halfway through, until browned on the edges and cooked through, about 20 to 25 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in the same bowl, toss together the Brussels sprouts, ½ tablespoon olive oil, ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Transfer to one side of a second rimmed baking sheet.
- In the same bowl, toss together the kale with 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Transfer kale to the other side of the baking sheet with the Brussels sprouts. Bake for 10 minutes until kale is crisp and browned. Remove the kale and set aside. Flip the Brussels sprouts over, and return the baking sheet to the oven. Bake for 6 to 8 more minutes until Brussels sprouts are browned and cooked through.
- In a medium nonstick skillet, combine the pepitas, ½ teaspoon olive oil and a generous pinch of salt. Toast over medium-high heat, stirring continuously, until pepitas are brown and puffed, about 3 to 4 minutes. The pepitas are almost done when you start hearing a popping sound. Transfer them to a small dish.
- To make the vinaigrette: In a high-speed blender, combine the shallot, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, honey, salt and pepper. Blend until smooth, about 30 seconds. Set aside.
- To assemble the bowls: Divide the wild rice among 6 bowls. Divide the roasted veggies and apples among the bowls. Top with feta and pepitas, and drizzle the vinaigrette over the top. Enjoy warm or cold.